Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels angered Philadelphia fans and teammates following his World Series Game 3 loss by stating that he couldn't wait for the season to end. But today he spoke to his teammates and manager Charlie Manuel to clear up any confusion and express to them how close they are to his heart.
"I am sorry if I hurt anyone with what I said," said Hamels, tearing up as he addressed the team. "But you guys mean everything to me. You're like stylists to me. No, no I mean that. Chase, I look at you like my eyebrow girl, Mindy. You're that important. Cliff Lee, you're my manicurist Wan-Li. And, Charlie oh, Charlie you're my personal shopper and style consultant, Heather."
Hamels went through most of the team similarly until he was finally stopped by teammate Brett Myers.
"Okay. We get it," said Myers. "You like us. You don't want to quit. That's great. But you don't have to be such a freaking girl about it. Jeez. Have some dignity, you woman."
Other Phillies echoed Myers' sentiments, but also stressed that they appreciated Hamels speaking up.
"I needed to hear it, because I had my doubts," said Ryan Howard. "We're all in this car together driving towards one goal and it's good to know we still have Cole roller-skating behind us. Although I could have used not being compared to his pedicurist. Gross."
Hamels' wife, Heidi, a former Survivor contestant, says she knows her husband is sincere because he used a similar speech to propose to her two years ago.
"I'll always remember it," says Heidi. "Cole crouched down he didn't want to get on one knee because he was wearing $300 Gucci slacks and said: 'Heidi, I've wanted a shopping partner my whole life. And I totally love your style. Even better, we both love Savage Garden. I want to grow old with you. Although I won't grow old. I'll stay looking fabulous forever. If I ever get wrinkles or get fat I would, like, totally blow my brains out.' It was so romantic."
Hamels says he is just happy to be back in the good graces of his teammates.
"My hair just doesn't lay right when I'm stressed or feeling unloved," he said. "You ever get that? Horrors."
There are two things we have learned so far in the World Series:
2) The Phillies have no idea how to pitch to this half-man, half-beast.
Rodriguez's 10 plate appearances in the last two games both Yankee wins have resulted in the following: HBP, home run, line out, HBP, walk, HBP, fly out, fly out, strike-out, game-winning double.
Clearly the Phillies need help. Lucky for them I know baseball. And I also know centaurs. So here are my:
Keys to Pitching to CentauRod
1. Exploit his massive strike zone. The strike zone in baseball is from the batter's knees up to the letters across the front of his jersey. On a centaur, that's about six to seven feet. Even a mythical being can't protect an area that big at the plate.
2. Distract him. In Greek mythology, centaurs are depicted as wild creatures enslaved to their unbridled passions. CentauRod is no different. The Phillies and their fans must distract him at the plate with athletic she-males, feed bags full of steroids, and mirrors.
3. Refer to the rule book. This may seem like a cheap way to win, but you're not the team putting a centaur in the lineup. First off, there has to be some sort of uniform violation with CentauRod. Second, weapons such as a bow-and-arrow are not allowed on the field during play. And, third, there's no way CentauRod is keeping all four of his legs in the batter's box. It's impossible.
4. Destroy his confidence in the field. If you can mess CentauRod up on the field, he'll lose some confidence at the plate. That's why the Phillies need to bunt down the third base line at him over and over and over. It's really hard for centaurs to bend down with their horse knees to pick up the ball. Of course, CentauRod may just pick the ball up with a spear. But then you just go back to the rule book violation.
5. If you're going to hit him, hit him in the right place. CentauRod has been hit with pitches three times in the last two games. That's not a problem. The problem is that the Phillies keep hitting him in the upper body. They need to hit him in the legs. Leg injuries are often fatal for horses. Centaurs are no different. A hard fastball just above the hoof should result in CentauRod getting slaughtered like Barbaro. Then who are the Yankees going to be stuck playing at third Jerry Hairston, Jr.? Ha! He's no centaur. He's a nymph. Advantage: Phillies.
Off to a miserable start in his first World Series, New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez is looking to end his slump by the old baseball method of hooking up with someone who is unattractive. And he says he has just the person in mind.
"I think I'm going to do Kurt Russell," said Rodriguez, now 0-for-8 in the series with six strikeouts. "I find him unattractive, yet he's also my girlfriend's stepfather. So she shouldn't mind too much."
Kurt Russell says he is still weighing the decision, but will decide before Game 3 so he can either do it with Rodriguez or the slugger can find someone equally or even more displeasing.
"I mean, I guess I could do it," he said. "It would be like acting. I'd just have to get into character. And my character would be me, Kurt Russell, having sex with Alex Rodriguez. Hmm. I'm not sure if I understand my character's motivation."
Rodriguez is in a long-term relationship with actress Kate Hudson, Russell's stepdaughter from his marriage to actress Goldie Hawn. But even though the couple is considering marriage, Rodriguez says Hudson was at first a bit of a slump-buster herself.
"I've always been more into the she-male, muscular types," he said. "Whereas Kate is soft and delicate and petite and curvaceous. It was hard for me to get past that and not just dry-heave for a while."
He sees Russell as more of a return to that norm.
"Put a blond wig on him and have him talk in a fake British accent, and it will almost be like doing it with Madonna again," he said. "I can work around the penis if it will get me out my slump. This is the World Series. I have to do whatever I have to do."
I am a baseball player. But if there is one thing the game has taught me, it's not a lesson about competition or sportsmanship or being a man or anything like that.
It's that you might have to fight an old person at a moment's notice.
Game 3 of the 2003 ALCS did I go to the park that day expecting to fight Don Zimmer? Not really. But then one thing led to another and I had to throw that 72-year-old man to the ground.
Live and learn.
Now I'm ready to kick an old person's ass at any moment. And you can be, too.
FOX is broadcasting the 2009 World Series between the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies.
Here is FOX analyst Howie Long with his keys to the series.
On his first day on the job as the new hitting coach for the St. Louis Cardinals, Mark McGwire was approached by outfielder Rick Ankiel for some batting tips.
But McGwire, ever safe with his words, just regurgitated lines his attorneys approved from his infamous testimony before Congress.